When Laura McCann first studied photography at art college everything was shot on film, it was expensive, time consuming and a luxury she couldn’t afford. Digital technology has made taking photos a part of daily life for many, including her but with those advances also comes a range of ways to manipulate images. It now seems that the camera can lie.   

Laura had wanted to do a series of unedited portraits for a while but it was during the first lockdown that her new project really took shape. McCann noticed a big increase in over-edited selfies online and she became concerned about the impact filters were having on people’s mental health; after all it wasn’t the real person getting all the 'likes'. Laura decided to focus on working with performers who already had an online presence and were used to being in the spotlight. The photos would be intimate, showing a trust on both sides of the lens that just isn’t possible in a selfie. No lights, no set ups, no touch ups. The aim being to show that we’re all enough as we are.

Laura's unedited portraits will now go on display at The Old Printworks on Mosley Road this weekend. People who visit the exhibition will see an eclectic group of people including actors, musicians and dancers but also less obvious candidates such as a preacher and a politician. The framed shots differ to those found online and you may notice a few familiar faces. Award winning sommelier Sonal Clare (formerly of Purnells and now general manager at the Wilderness) was snapped on a rare day off in Birmingham, BBC radio presenter turned podcaster Peter Morgan is pictured relaxing at home, much loved DJ and producer Sam Redmore took Laura on a walk near his house and BBC Midlands presenter Beccy Wood invited the photographer to the dairy farm where she was living.

Laura's Performers exhibition shows at The Old Printworks on Mosely Road from the 4th-11th of December (closed Sunday. Entry is free. Further details about Laura and her work can be found at lauramccannphotos.com. You can also follow Laura on Instagram and Facebook @lauramccannphotos